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Latest Activity

mariekg PIR 0530 Ship13 Div184 replied to ellen0502's discussion 'Ship 13 (USS Marvin Shields) Division 183 and 184 (Brother Divisions)' in the group PIR 05/30/2014 TG 29 - 7 Divisions (183-188 and 929)
8 minutes ago
J-Man's Mom commented on ellen0502's group 'PIR 05/30/2014 TG 29 - 7 Divisions (183-188 and 929)'
11 minutes ago
farmer ship 2 division 928 replied to ellen0502's discussion 'Ship 02 (USS Reuben James) Division 928' in the group PIR 05/23/2014 TG 28 - 7 Divisions (177-182, and 928) Each recruit will be permitted 4 guests.
11 minutes ago
Profile IconRazorbackfan214, Momzy66 and 2 other members joined Donna's group
13 minutes ago
J-Man's Mom commented on ellen0502's group 'PIR 05/30/2014 TG 29 - 7 Divisions (183-188 and 929)'
16 minutes ago
farmer ship 2 division 928 commented on Dianne C's group '900's division sailors'
17 minutes ago
Beth commented on ellen0502's group 'PIR 05/30/2014 TG 29 - 7 Divisions (183-188 and 929)'
18 minutes ago
spomss commented on Donna's group 'Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones)'
24 minutes ago
DTbowl replied to Lorraine's discussion 'Meet Up in Ann Arbor, April 26th' in the group Michigan Moms (and Family)
26 minutes ago
Cheyenne (Ship 13, Div 173) commented on ellen0502's group 'PIR 05/16/2014 TG 27 - 9 Divisions (171-176, 812-813 and 927) Each recruit will be permitted 4 guests.'
27 minutes ago
Cheyenne (Ship 13, Div 173) replied to ellen0502's discussion 'Ship 13 (USS Marvin Shields) Division 173 and 174 (Brother Divisions)' in the group PIR 05/16/2014 TG 27 - 9 Divisions (171-176, 812-813 and 927) Each recruit will be permitted 4 guests.
30 minutes ago

Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones)


Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones)

To everyone with a loved one at the RTC or soon to be there, we say, "Welcome!"  To those who are sticking around after PIR to help those who are just beginning this awesome journey, we say, "Thank you!"

This is a place to talk, ask questions, and share stories. It is our desire that this Group will provide the information, encouragement, and support you need while your loved one is at the RTC in Great Lakes. Enjoy your time here and feel free to Comment and join in the Discussions. Be sure to check out the "Pages" to the right, located under the pictures of the Members, especially OPSEC and PERSEC (Making Changes to Your Profile), (Click "View All" to see all of them.)

Members: 10680
Latest Activity: 13 minutes ago

Answers to Common Questions

Are there any official RTC sites?

Yes, check out and They will have lots of information for you. also has items at times.

The RTC will stream PIR live at and beginning at 8:45 am CST on the day of PIR for those who are unable to attend in person.

The PAO has a weekly Trivia Tuesday contest on This is an opportunity for you to win a photo of your recruit's division with your recruit front and center in the photo.


Can recruits take anything to BC with them?

Recruits should go with what they have on their backs, their cell phones, and not much else. (See Things to Do in the Last Month Before Your Future Sailor Leaves for the RTC.)


What will the first day be like at BC?

See Arrival and What Happens at the RTC and Ship/Division--How it Works.

How long is the "I'm here!" call and when will s/he be able to call again?

See Phone Cards and Phone Calls.


When will "The Box" come?

It will usually arrive by FedEx within a few days, but it can take up to 2 weeks at times.


I got my recruit's address from the recruiter. Can I trust it?

Double-check the address the recruiter gave you against those at, but we strongly encourage you to wait on the form letter before sending mail to your recruit. Sometimes a form letter is not mailed by accident and if it has been at least 2 calendar weeks since your recruit arrived at the RTC and you do not have a form letter, then you can call the recruiter and get the address and mail letters to your recruit, but be sure to double-check the address against those at or Ship/Division--How it Works.


When will the Form Letter come and what is in it?

The Form Letter will arrive in your regular mail a week or so after "The Box" arrives--10 days after arrival is the average, but it can come sooner or 2 to 3 weeks after arrival. (You can find a copy of the current form letter in the Page, The Form Letter. The brochure that is included from MWRGL about hotels and other things is at This form letter is full of info and you will need it to get the vehicle/gate pass if you are driving onto the RTC for PIR, so keep it in a safe place. It includes your recruit's address, so now you can mail out all the letters you have been writing. There is more on this in Letter Writing & Fun Stuff/Questionnaires to send to your Recruit.

 The Form Letter will also tell you the date of PIR, so you can start making plans for your trip. There are many hotels in the area and there is information in the grad pack and on this site about them. If you fly in, renting a car will make your life easier. Also, if you are flying, some airlines, such as Southwest, will allow you to change your flight if something happens without a charge, so you do not have to book refundable tickets. Plan to arrive the day before PIR so you won't risk missing this very special event and go to Sarge's Meet and Greet (go to Events on the right or in the tab above and move the calendar to the day before PIR and then locate it) and maybe part of another Meet and Greet (Ramada Inn has one and sometimes Flanagan's). If your Sailor's "A" School or training is in GL, plan to leave late Sunday or on Monday and if your Sailor will be flying out, then plan to leave late Saturday or on Sunday to have the most time with your Sailor. (This may need to be adjusted if PIR is not on Friday.) See Saving Money PIR Weekend and PIR Day and Liberty during PIR Weekend.


Sarge has a taxi service and he is a wealth of information and has a Meet and Greet at the Sundance Saloon in Waukegan the night before PIR. His cell number is 847-212-0246. His M&G and services have been getting great reviews. Find Sarge on N4M as OldSarge.


Once you know your recruit's PIR date, be sure to join the group for that. New groups are posted on here or you can go to and join the group for that once it has been created.


How do I know who my recruit plans to put on the Access List?

The Form Letter will also include the names of up to 3 or 4 people, depending on the size of the TG, that your recruit plans to put on the Access List about 10 days before PIR (some Sailors have indicated that they submitted the names during the week of PIR). If the names on the form letter are not the same as those who will be attending, write to your recruit and give him/her the names that should be listed as they should be written. Recruits sometimes write “Mom, Dad, Bro, Sis” or other similar names to save time and give them more time to write a short note to you (one recruit wrote a single letter on each line); don’t worry your recruit will write the given names on the Access List when the time comes. If you are concerned that your recruit may not know someone’s given name or the correct spelling of someone’s name, write to your recruit and give him/her the names as they should be included on the Access List. Nicknames that a reasonable person would associate with the name on the ID are fine, but it is best if the names on the Access List match the ID’s of those who are attending. will tell you how many guests your recruit is permitted. Children ages 2 and under do not have to be listed, but all others must be on the Access List in order to attend PIR.


How do I get the vehicle/gate pass?

About 11 days before PIR the link to download the vehicle/gate pass will be posted at You will need to enter the password from the form letter using all capital letters and then print the vehicle pass and handwrite in the information to fill in the blanks. You can print off more than one vehicle pass if your Sailor's guests will be arriving in more than one vehicle or just to be certain that you know where one is.


What will happen PIR weekend?

See PIR Day and Liberty during PIR Weekend and,


Donna is not on the site much now and lemonelephant will be helping out along with many others who have begun this journey before you. (Donna, we are forever thankful that you started this group that continues to help so many.)


Be sure to check out the Pages to the right (under the pictures of the Members) for additional information. (You will need to click "View All" to see all of them.)

Discussion Forum

Navy Basic Acronyms

Started by Karen - Proud Mom of Amber. Last reply by lemonelephant on Monday. 8 Replies

Going to Fort Sam Houston

Started by Paula. Last reply by lemonelephant Apr 16. 14 Replies

Need Clarification

Started by KemMomAPR14_SHIP 04_DIV 187. Last reply by lemonelephant Apr 9. 11 Replies

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Boot Camp Moms (and loved ones) to add comments!

Comment by lemonelephant 14 minutes ago

RDC's and others will only read a recruit's mail with the recruit's permission. Recruits often share letters with each other especially when a recruit has not gotten a letter and they sometimes share letters with the RDC as well.

Comment by lemonelephant 19 minutes ago

spomss, you are welcome.

Comment by lemonelephant 20 minutes ago

The Page, Letter Writing & Fun Stuff/Questionnaires to send to your Recruit, gives info on what is permitted and what should not be sent to the RTC. Recruits are instructed to turn in any items that are enclosed that are not permitted. We have heard from a few loved ones lately that recruits in some divisions have to open all mail in front of another recruit and remove any questionable items and give them to the RDC. Typically only thick envelopes and packages have to be opened in front of the RDC. Recruits open and read their mail in front of each other and sometimes the RDC as well, so be aware of what is and is not permitted.

Comment by spomss 24 minutes ago

thanks lemonelephant for the ribbon info....

Comment by lemonelephant 28 minutes ago

MommaShep, one of the sites to order ribbons to wear to PIR is from Lala Ribbon Queen PIR Ribbons. Her Website is and her Facebook Page is Another is There are several sites for pins and Navy charms as well.

Comment by Ashley 32 minutes ago
envelope draws attention**

I would avoid making your recruit's letters stand out at ALL. If his RDC is a hard-ass he could get a bunch of crap. And the way I hear it if one recruit messes up they all mess up; builds a "team mentality". So, I'd assume they'd all get IT. That wouldn't make someone very popular. So, I'd advise against using perfume, stickers, glitter, etc.
Comment by spomss 33 minutes ago

very sweet LaLaRibbonQueen still doing them??  maybe you can check in your PIR group too???

yes remember the guidelines for letter writing...takes a little getting used to for sure.... has lots of info

Comment by Ashley 39 minutes ago
You can send pictures "in good taste". They tell you to print them on computer paper and write your letters on the paper to save space and weigh less. I printed a picture on computer paper, cut it out, and sent it with the letter. Also, low quality paper weigh less. So I used thin notebook paper.

As far as I've read they only make them open the letters in front of them if they weigh too much (require extra postage) or the Evernote draws attention to the recruit.
Comment by MommaShep 42 minutes ago
There was a post a while back about the division ribbons and pins. If memory serves there were two different websites. Would someone be kind enough to repost them. My husband wanted to know what he should get me for Mother's Day and at first I said nothing but one of those pins would be perfect :)
Comment by Navy mom 49 42 minutes ago
Bee you can put a pic in letter. We copied some and sent them to our son. Just no colored envelopes glitter, pics on envelopes.

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